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Published:December 28th, 2006 10:43 EST
Disaster Tax Relief Available for Louisiana Residents

Disaster Tax Relief Available for Louisiana Residents

By SOP newswire

ALEXANDRIA, La. -- Louisiana residents who suffered damages from the severe storms and flooding that occurred between Oct. 16 and Nov. 8 may be eligible for disaster tax relief from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

The IRS has announced that affected taxpayers have been granted an extension to file or pay most tax returns including individual tax returns and employment tax returns. The new deadline to file is Jan. 2, 2007.

In addition, affected taxpayers in Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Caldwell , Franklin , Grant, Jefferson Davis, LaSalle, Madison , Morehouse, Natchitoches , Richland , Sabine, St. Helena , St. Landry, Vernon and Winn parishes have the option of claiming disaster-related losses either on this year's (2006) or last year's (2005) income tax return. Claiming the loss on an original or amended return for last year will get the taxpayer an earlier refund, but waiting to claim the loss on this year's return could result in a greater tax saving, depending on other income factors.

For more information taxpayers may download forms and publications from the IRS Web site at or may order them by calling 1-800-TAX-FORM (1-800-829-3676). The IRS toll-free number for general tax questions is 1-800-829-1040.

Affected taxpayers claiming the disaster loss on last year's return should put "Severe Storms, Flooding -LA) in red ink at the top of the form so that the IRS can expedite the processing of the refund.

FEMA manages federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident, initiates mitigation activities and manages the National Flood Insurance Program. FEMA works closely with state and local emergency managers, law enforcement personnel, firefighters and other first responders. FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003.